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Monday, September 15, 2008

"Human Rights" organization news

CAMERA takes the New York Times to task for describing the Free Gaza freakazoids as "human rights advocates":
the Times is whitewashing Israel’s adversaries. This time, it is lending undue credibility to the Free Gaza Movement, a controversial group of extreme pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel activists, by describing them not as a pro-Palestinian activist group – which they undeniably are – but rather with the noble designation “human rights advocates.” This description, which appeared several times in Taghreed El-Khodary and Isabel Kershner’s Aug. 24 story Rights advocates defy Israeli blockade of Gaza, is prejudicial, subjective and misleading, and should not appear in the news section of a serious paper – certainly not to describe a group that includes people who advocate against the existence of the Jewish state, accuse Israel of genocide, and explicitly legitimize violence.
Read the whole thing for details and proof, as well as the NYT's absurd response.

In other "human rights" organization news, the Jerusalem Post has a profile of Yuval Steinitz, who was an enthusaistic supporter of Peace Now during Oslo but woke up to the dangers of a Palestinian Arab state a few years later:
"Oslo could have been right. I gave it a chance, but then I had to be a skeptic and reexamine my position. Then I felt that what we did was a terrible mistake," said Steinitz.

"I realized that, to my frustration, we were giving up land for war and terror and incitement," he said.

To his sorrow, said Steinitz, the principles of Oslo remain intact in the Annapolis process and direct negotiations continue between Israeli and the Palestinian leaders, despite the dangers they pose.

His objection to territorial compromise is not rooted in a belief in biblical Israel, but is the outcome of a security analysis, said Steinitz, who is a former head of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

"For any foreseeable future I do not see a partner, or any possibility to leave Judea and Samaria or even part of it," he said.

"The idea of a two-state solution should be dead, today, because unfortunately a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria would bring about Israel's demise," he added. Such a Palestinian state, he warned, would "immediately become an outpost for Iran." The Hamas takeover of Gaza less than two years after Israel withdrew from the area was a scenario that could repeat itself in the West Bank, he warned.

The only reason Kassam rockets had not been fired at the center of the country or at Ben-Gurion International Airport was because Israel had a military presence in the West Bank, said Steinitz.
And, finally, we get to the sad news that another supposed "human rights" group has been unmasked, and will lose its EU funding:
Jerusalem-based watchdog NGO Monitor has learned this week that the European Union (EU) has decided not to renew its funding of the Israel Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD).

In an 'urgent message' to members of ICAHD-USA, the organization's director Jeff Halper announced 'We have just heard that our request for re-funding has been rejected…So we now face a real crisis'. The message went on to plead with supporters for extra funds.

For several years, despite its extreme anti-Israel agenda, ICAHD has been a recipient of major EU funding under the Partnerships for Peace framework. The EU has consistently stated that these grants are directed towards specific projects and are not intended as general funds for the organization. However, as NGO Monitor demonstrated in, "Europe's Hidden Hand" an EU grant of 473,000 Euros in 2005 constituted the majority of ICAHD's annual budget.

ICAHD consistently manipulates the language of human rights to promote an anti-Israel political agenda. ICAHD routinely refers to Israel as an 'apartheid' state while Jeff Halper promotes a one state solution which would mean the end of Israel as a Jewish state. This is in direct contradiction to the EU's official policy, which promotes a two state solution.

NGO Monitor's Executive Director, Prof Gerald Steinberg commented, "ICAHD's façade has finally been acknowledged, and the European Commission has acted appropriately in ending further funding. In reality, ICAHD does nothing to advance coexistence and instead promotes extreme views which fuel the conflict. Following this precedent, we urge the EC to review all such NGO funding in a transparent manner, and establish consistent criteria."
In a world where anti-Zionism tries to masquerade as "human rights," this is a rare piece of good news.